Game Series: Dragon Warrior (NES) Episode 2

The first game in the Dragon Warrior (Dragon Quest) series came out for the Nintendo Entertainment System (otherwise known as the Family Computer or Famicom in Japan) in 1986, and got a North America port in 1989.  It was a stellar success in Japan, but was received a little less favorably in the western markets.  However, it’s still regarded as the great-grandfather of the console RPG genre.  I have written a review of the game, but decided that I’d do a Let’s Play Classics play through of the game.  This is episode 2, featuring the the first approximate hour of game play.  Below is the video:

We pick up where we left off in the last episode with King Lorik (cause we saved).  At this point we’ve gained a few levels (we’re level 6) and have upgraded a bit of our equipment with some gear from the armory shop in Brecconary.

In this episode we’re going to first explore the cave in the desert area between Brecconary and Garinham.  Because we haven’t learned the “Radiant” spell yet, which would light our way in the cave, we should probably stock on a couple torches.  So I get a few from the item shop in Brecconary.  Onwards to “Erdrick’s Cave,” our first spelunking adventure.

I pretty much know where I’m going in this cave, but here’s a handy map on GameFaqs (I wasn’t able to make my own this time, but I hope to make future maps).  In essence, it’s pretty much straightforward and there are no monsters, which is handy!  We get to the end treasure and pick up Erdrick’s Tablet.  I guess we were destined to find this?  We get the following:

Fortune smiles upon the, Asher.  Thou hast found the Tablet.  The tablet reads as follows:

I am Erdrick and thou art my descendant.  Three items were needed to reach the Isle of Dragons, which is south of Brecconary.

I gathered these items, reached the island, and there defeated a creature of great evil.

Now I have entrusted the three items to three worthy keepers.  Their descendants will protect the items until thy quest leads thee to seek them out.

When a new evil arises, find the three items, then fight!

Wow, that’s pretty cool, except for one thing… what are the three items?  Ah well, we’ll get them in due time, meanwhile let’s hop out of this cave.  We’re going to go north and follow the seashore like the guy said in the last episode to the town of Garinham.  The town of Garinham is pretty nice, and it has a new weapons shop (and new tool shop), but it also has this weird door.  Damn magic keys.  Anyway, we get to Garinham and start talking to the townsfolk.  What do they have to say?

We talk to the old man wizard looking guy in the tool shop and he tells us, “Garin, a wandering minstrel of legendary fame, is said to have built this town.”  Thus… Garinham.  Okay.  Does that mean if I found a town it’d be Asherham?  Hmmm…  Well, this tool shop is pretty similar, but it does sell Dragon Scales.  We don’t really need one, but it’s handy to know.

We go into the other old man’s house, I assume, south of the tool shop and he tells us this handy piece of info, “Many believe that Princess Gwaelin is hidden away in a cave.”  Good to know.  We go to the desert-ish hideout of the red guard and he asks us, “I have heard of one named Nester.  Dost thou know such a one?”  We don’t get to really answer, but hey there it is.  This was one of those wink wink things in the eighties, as Nintendo Power used to have a character named “Nester”, named after the NES.  I assume that’s what this is about.

We talk to the blue woman outside the weapons shop, “Welcome to Garinham.  May thy stay be a peaceful one.”  Why thank you m’lady.

The man outside the door to whatever big warehouse building in the north of this town has this to say, “It is said that the Princess was kidnapped and taken eastward.”  A little bit of a venture down to the inn and we discover that it costs 25 gold to stay a night.  Whaaat? 25 gold?  Psh, whatever.

Alright, so what do we do now?  We get some gold to afford that Hand Axe and Chain Mail at the weapons shop in Garinham of course!  It’s 570 and 300 gold respectively, so it’s gonna be a while though we can speed it up if we go across the bridge to the south and fight in the hills.

Bestiary Part 1

I thought I’d take a moment and draw up a bit of a bestiary for this game for the monsters encountered so far.  I have pulled the statistics from a number of different sources, including my own experience playing the game.  I have included pictures from the capture video for each monster.  These are not in alphabetical order, but rather, in the order in which I encountered them within the game.  Hopefully this will be helpful to you.

Red Slime

HP: 4

EXP: 1

Avg GOLD: 2

Special Attacks: None

Spells: None

Area: Around Tantegel Castle

Description: This is the step-up from the regular slime, a bit harder when you’re early in the game. They have one extra hit point and increased attack power, so be careful!


HP: 3

EXP: 1

Avg GOLD: 1

Special Attacks: None

Spells: None

Area: Around Tantegel Castle

Description: This is THEE monster of the Dragon Quest series, you’ll see it everywhere. It is also the most basic enemy in most cases, and in fact is the easiest creature in the game. The slime is great for gaining experience early on, but not for long as he’s only worth 1 EXP.


HP: 6

EXP: 2

Avg GOLD: 3

Special Attacks: None

Spells: None

Area: Around Tantegel Castle

Description: This is an intimidating enemy past the Red Slime when you’re just starting your adventure out. At 6 hit points he can seem indomitable until you have higher stats yourself. Fortunately, as well early on, it’s worth the extra EXP.


HP: 13

EXP: 4

Avg GOLD: 12

Special Attacks: None

Spells: Hurt

Area: North-East of Tantegel Castle and up towards Kol

Description: The magician is seemingly unstoppable at 13 hit points, but once you reach level 4 you learnt he Hurt spell (the same spell he uses against you), which gives you a decided advantage. When you encounter this monster early in your travels, use the Hurt spell on him, it’s worth the magic points in comparison to how much gold you get back. Unfortunately, the EXP drop is a bit weak.


HP: 7

EXP: 3

Avg GOLD: 5

Special Attacks: None

Spells: None

Area: Up towards Kol and in desert areas

Description:One of my favorite enemies, just look at that expression! The Ghost is an average enemy when compared to the Magician above, however by the time you’ll be fighting the Ghost you should be ready for him. Get some stronger weapons, such as a sword when you start encountering this guy and you’ll probably down him with one hit.


HP: 20

EXP: 6

Avg GOLD: 16

Special Attacks: None

Spells: None

Area: Desert areas, particularly south of Kol and the southern continent

Description: The Scorpion is a bit like the ghost, except much more powerful. There’s nothing particularly special about him, as you might’ve suspected poison as I did, so he just takes away hit points. Being a good fighter, fighting brawn with brawn never seems to go wrong.


HP: 15

EXP: 5

Avg GOLD: 9

Special Attacks: None

Spells: Hurt

Area: Southern continents as well as caves and dungeons

Description: The Magidrakee is deceptively difficult, and packs quite a punch with a lot of hit points and a Hurt spell to fling at you. Make sure you don’t get too low on hit points when fighting this guy, one Hurt spell and you’ll be toast!

The Adventure Continues…

Once I got enough gold for both the Chain Mail and the Hand Axe by fighting the monsters in the early part of the southern continent I called it a day.  At this point you should be level 7 or 8.  Stay tuned for further adventures in the land of Dragon Warrior!

This post is part of a series known as “Let’s Play Classics” focusing on the Dragon Quest series.

If you appreciate my play-throughs please help support me through my Patreon.


I'm just a wunk, trying to enjoy life. I am a cofounder of http// and I like computers, code, creativity, and friends.

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